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Double-T Nation Daily Diatribe // 05.01.09

Odds and Ends

Texas Tech Likely to be Tier-One

Good news I think. The LAJ is reporting that Texas Tech is likely to upgrade to tier-one status. Congrats to all involved in this step of the process and let's hope this gets resolved by the end of this legislative session.


Texas Tech Football

Brandon Williams Overcomes

FWST's Dwain Price writes about DE Brandon Williams who overcame a bad neighborhood to get drafted in the NFL and is becoming a role model in his community. Loved this:

Williams is making an impact on his stepfather’s select football team, which he frequently helps coach. Gary Hampton, who coaches the team composed of 14- and 15-year-olds — including Williams’ 15-year-old brother, Demondre — said the kids see Williams as an up-and-coming role model.

"Each one of those kids are listening to what he has to say because it gives them a sense of hope," Hampton said. "Now they know that they can grasp it also, and they’re touching it and seeing an individual that came from the college level to the NFL level.

"They’re bringing me their report cards, they’re showing me their grades and it’s just an exciting moment right now. And when they see Brandon they play that much harder because they’re trying to impress Brandon."

That's making an impact. Go read the whole thing.

Harrell to get a Chance

The Plain Dealer notes that the Cleveland Browns intend to give all draft picks and free agent signings an equal shot to make their team, which bodes well for QB Graham Harrell.

Meanwhile, Sporting News' Matt Hayes has a reasoned look as to why Harrell was not drafted and McGee was:

His [Harrell's] arm strength was average, and he didn't look comfortable taking snaps under center. The latter can be easily fine-tuned; the former cannot. In the game -- a game of the elite from all NCAA divisions -- Harrell was exposed. McGee, meanwhile, threw well at the NFL Combine and showed good arm strength outside the numbers. NFL people believe they can teach a guy with a big arm to make the right throw and the right decisions (fallacy), and that a guy with average arm strength has zero upside (not altogether true).

Crabtree with San Francisco

Mercury News Daniel Brown writes that WR Michael Crabtree is a good fit with the San Francisco 49ers. I liked this bit:

Years before Michael Sr. guided his son's career choice, another member of the household played a pivotal role in Crabtree's journey toward the NFL. Keiron Stevenson wasn't trying to be profound. He just trying to annoy the daylights out of his kid brother.

Stevenson kept firing a football at little Michael. He kept firing it hard.

"He was six years older than me," Crabtree recalled. "And I got tired of catching it with my chest because it was hurting me."

The moral of the story? "I started using my hands," he said.

Crabtree hasn't stopped using his hands since, snaring 231 passes during his two seasons at Texas Tech. He caught 41 touchdown passes, too, which appeals to the 49ers in the way that a hot-fudge sundae might appeal to a starving man: The 49ers have 35 touchdown catches as a team over the past two seasons.